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MotoGP Misano #2: Lowes 'had the speed' for front-row start

Sam Lowes came close to replicating last-weekend’s stellar result as he hunted down a second successive Moto2 pole position this afternoon.

During a record-breaking session headed by world championship leader Luca Marini, the Marc VDS rider eventually qualified fourth for tomorrow’s 25-lap race at Misano.

Showing sensational form from the start of this morning’s FP3 session, Lowes fired in a new all-time lap record of 1:35.800, on only his fifth lap, to open up a commanding early advantage of 0.245s over the 29-strong field.


Utilising the grip from Dunlop’s new specification soft rear tyre early-on in the final practice he ensured his advancement into Q2 before reverting to the hard compound on which he continued to set a fast and consistent pace in race trim to finish second behind Enea Bastianini.

The improvement from the new hoop was clear to see in Q2, the Englishman switched fully to time-attack mode, setting a 1’35.740 on his fourth lap, almost half-a-second faster than his previous record-breaker set seven days ago.

The 30-year-old looked well on course for his fifth front-row start of 2020 as he upped his pace late-on but unfortunately it wasn’t to be, as small mistakes in the final sector on successive laps thwarted his charge and Lowes was forced to settle for the second row.

“I’m satisfied to have been fighting for the front row again, but I think I could have been in the top three without mistakes in the last sector on my final two fast laps,” said Lowes.

“Marini and Bezzecchi are very fast but I should have easily been P3 because my ideal time was much quicker than what I actually achieved. I did a lot of fast laps and it is a bit disappointing not to be on the front row when it was clear that I had the speed to do it.

“I can’t be too disappointed though because my race pace is good, and I am riding well and feel my potential is to fight for the podium.

“It should be a good battle and I’m sure I will be involved because my pace on the hard rear tyre has been very strong all weekend.”

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